New Delhi, India: The United States Department of Defence, Pentagon, stated that the defence ties between India and the United States carry a high significance for both nations. The Pentagon Press Secretary, Air Force Brig Gen. Pat Ryder, stated that “it’s a highly significant relationship between the United States and India on the security cooperation and defence cooperation aspects. And we look forward to continuing to engage with the Indian leadership.”
India holds the position of major defence partner of the United States, pushing India to the level at par with the closest allies of the United States. India’s status as Major Defence Partner has been included in the India Amendment in the National Defence Authorisation Act (NDAA), 2017 of the US.
This stature of India institutionalizes the progress that the US made to facilitate defence trade and technology sharing with India at a level equivalent to US’s closest allies and partners. This will allow US to provide India with the latest and advanced defence technology.
Additionally, it will add to the effectiveness of the US-India Defence Trade and Technology Initiative(DTII) and the India Rapid Reaction Cell at the Pentagon.
The defence relationship has been the foundation for the India-US strategic partnership. With this relationship, the nations have indulged in enhanced defence trade, conducting joint exercises, personnel exchanges and cooperation in maritime security and counter-piracy.
Brig Gen. Ryder also highlighted China-Russia’s joint development of new chemical weapons. About North Korea being part of this cooperation, Ryder stated that “It’s something that we’re keeping track of, we’ll further continue to consult our allies in the region in terms of counter-proliferation when it comes to chemical and biological weapons.”
At the same time, Ryder commented about Pakistan’s accusations that Afghanistan is harbouring terrorists,” without getting into internal politics of Pakistan, it is known from a long time that the terrorist organizations exist within Afghanistan and throughout the region, which certainly isn’t a surprise to no one”